SoCot steps up vax drive for priority health workers

SoCot steps up vax drive for priority health workers

GENERAL SANTOS CITY – The provincial government of South Cotabato is targeting to complete by next month the inoculation of its priority front-line health care workers to protect them against the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19). 

Dr. Rogelio Aturdido Jr., chief of the Integrated Provincial Health Office, said Thursday they have stepped up the vaccination activities in the province’s 10 towns and lone city to cover more eligible health workers.

Aturdido said a total of 8,826 doses of Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines have been delivered to the province in four tranches since March 6 by the Department of Health (DOH) 12 (Soccsksargen).

As of Wednesday, he said some 3,934 health workers have received their first dose of the vaccines but the figure is only about 45 percent of their target based on the master list of the eligible recipients and the delivered supplies.

“We’re trying to catch up right now to reach more than 70 percent coverage,” he said in a press briefing in Koronadal City.

Aturdido said they are continually encouraging all front-line health workers in the province to get vaccinated to ensure their protection as they continue to handle Covid-19 patients.

A significant number of the eligible workers, he said, have responded to the call based on their updated master list of recipients.

Aturdido specifically cited those identified in the third and fourth batches of the inoculation, which covered workers assigned in temporary treatment and monitoring facilities, barangay isolation units, health centers, and rural health units.

The list included members of the barangay health emergency response teams and contact-tracers.

Last Monday, he said, the DOH-12 delivered some 2,800 doses of Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines for the fourth tranche but the list of eligible recipients has increased to more than 3,800.

This prompted them to prioritize and make adjustments with the administration of the vaccines, pending the delivery of additional supplies, Aturdido said, adding that the province has logged an acceptance rate of 79 percent among recipients in priority hospitals covered by the vaccination.

In terms of adverse effects, he said only 370 cases, or less than the acceptable 10 percent rate, have been reported and all are considered minor.

He said they are hoping to maintain the trend as they continue with the expanded vaccination activities in parts of the province. (PNA)

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